The specific name 'elegans' means elegant; 'Auckland green gecko' refers to the known distribution of this subspecies in the greater Auckland area. The Maori name kakariki means 'green'
This subspecies does not co-exist with other members of Naultinus. However, N. elegans elegans can be distinguished from Northland green gecko, N. grayi by blackish tongue (N. grayi has reddish tongue); distinguished from Wellington green gecko, N. elegans punctatus by having soles of feet grey-green (subspecies punctatus has yellow soles) and note also differences in size (subspecies punctatus larger) and vocal behaviour (subspecies punctatus more aggressive and vocal).
North Island + tongue black + soles of feet grey-green.
This species was feared by the early Maori (Best 1923, Downes 1937).
Auckland green gecko; Elegant gecko
A small and slender species (55-74 mm SVL, up to 145 mm total length and 11 g; Hitchmough 1979, Jewell 2008). Bright green either uniform or with rows of pale green, white, yellow or pinkish spots, or continuous stripes finely edged with black. Yellow individuals are known, with similar markings or stripes, but are more common among captive populations than in the wild. Ventral and latero-ventral surfaces are sexually dichromatic in being pale green (female) or pale blue (male) upon maturity, juveniles pale green. Eye light orange-brown. Mouth lining blue, tongue black or bluish-black. Soles of feet and toes grey-green. Scales on upper surface of snout enlarged, domed and with rounded margins. Cloacal spurs green (Hitchmough 1979, Hitchmough 1997).
Naultinus elegans elegans
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